On March 21, 2008, a tiny, preemie baby was born in a hospital in Nakhon Si Tahammarat, Thailand. He lived in that hospital for the first 3 months of his life, defying the odds to survive an extremely early, traumatic delivery. Although we were not there to hold him, and we did not know his face or name, we were in the paper process of adoption from Thailand and praying for God to send us a child in His perfect timing. On February 27, 2009, less than a month before this sweet boy turned 1 year old, I heard the words from Holt's case worker we had been longing to hear telling us that this little boy was going to become our son: "We can make this an official match today--Congratulations!" In August 2010, we held him in our arms for the first time and he came home on September 2, 2010. Last March, we were finally able to throw a birthday party for him to celebrate his life. And November of last year, we finalized his adoption! Last night, he volunteered to pray before his birthday dinner, and tears of joy spilled from my eyes as I listened to his sweet, quiet voice thank God for his "Mommy and Daddy" for "Jesus" and for "Alex, Aerin, and Rascal" (our dog).
Every life is beautiful, and I am very grateful for the beauty God has allowed me to see in His plan for Anderson's life, for our family, and for the lives of so many precious ones who are orphans no more. We cannot imagine our lives or our family without the gift of Anderson. And I am grateful that many years ago when we began to pray about adoption, God spoke to my heart and banished my fears and doubt when it seemed that adoption was impossible for our family's circumstances. He guided, protected, comforted, and provided for every step of the journey to bring Anderson home and continues to pour His mercies out upon us as we navigate the waters of caring for, advocating for, and parenting a child with special needs.
"I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God." Psalm 40:1-3a
Here are a few photos of Anderson, past to present. He is growing and learning so much, and we cannot wait to see what this new year of life will bring for him and our family. We love being his parents, and seeing how God continues to work in his life.
|3 Months old - June 2008|
|1 Year Old - With 1st Foster Mom|
|18 Months Old - September 2009|
|2 Years Old - March 2010|
|August 2010, 29 months old, with 2nd foster Mom|
|The day we first met him in Thailand, August 2010|
(if you know me, ask me why Alex and Aerin are wet and dressed in adult sized t-shirts)
|In his hometown August 2010, with his social worker and the agency representative|
|A break to read and rest on our trip to the zoo in his hometown, August 2010|
|Family Dedication day 2010 at our wonderful church, Shelby Crossings|
|His first time to celebrate Christmas, December 2010|
|with brother and sister in front of the Christmas tree, 2010|
|His 3rd birthday cake (he loves cars and wheels), March 2011|
|Playing with one of his cars at his 3 year birthday party!|
|Looking at the big tractor with Papa at his work, 2012|
|Loving his "4" candle from his birthday brownies, March 21, 2012!|
|4th Birthday cupcakes at Grandmama's house!|
|Cruisin' into year 5, March 22, 2012|
Loving, Learning, and Celebrating God's gifts as we celebrate Anderson's life,